Jesus Christ did so much, and spoke so many good things, that one of his followers said that if everything Jesus did was written down, the world would not fit all the books! So it is very hard to write about Jesus in a short article.
Why does the Bible have four books in the New Testament about Jesus? Each book looks at Jesus in a slightly different way.
Matthew’s book tells the story from a Jewish view. He looks back at the ancient Jewish writings in the Old Testament. These writings said that Jesus would come and what he would do.
Mark’s book is the shortest story. Mark looks at how Jesus was the Son of God – how he used the power that God had given him.
Luke’s book about Jesus looks at the man from the view of people who are NOT Jews, including you and me. Luke was a Greek doctor, and he looks at how Jesus lived among the common people. Luke also wrote the book in the Bible called Acts of the Apostles.
John’s book looks at the man Jesus very closely. John writes down many of the speeches that Jesus gave in detail. John does not write things down in order. Instead, John looks at some of the special things Jesus said and did.
Each book is slightly different. If we read them all, we can get a better picture of who Jesus was. It is very hard to divide a man like Jesus, but we will try!
Jesus the Man
Jesus was a human being just like you and me. He had a human mother (Mary), but his father was God in heaven. God taught Jesus from a very early age. How this was done, the Bible does not tell us, but Jesus knew so much about his Father, that Jesus was called “The Word of God”. Jesus could see things far clearer than you could or I could. He could see things as God would see them, and he had the ability to read minds. He could look at a person and know what that person’s problem was. Jesus wanted to show us that God was like a Father to all of us.
Jesus the Teacher
God had given the Jewish people a law, called the Law of Moses. This was a Law for the Jewish nation, and you can find it in the first five books of the Old Testament. Jesus gave the Jews, and us, a different law. It was based on the old Law, but it made people look at themselves. Jesus taught us to look at why we do things. So many bad things we do are because we do not think first!
For example, the Law said: – “Do not kill”. Jesus goes further and says, “Do not even hate someone”. Of course if you cannot hate someone, you could never kill them, could you!
However, Jesus said more. He said, “If someone hits you on one cheek, let him hit you on the other cheek as well.” Jesus does not want you to fight back. Jesus taught us not to fight for any reason. Even if someone urged us to, we must not fight. We are to love our enemies. How can a follower of Jesus fight in any war? He cannot, can he! Just as God sends rain upon the bad and the good, so we should love all men and women, no matter who they are or what they have done.
Now these new laws are almost impossible to keep. If someone hits us, we want to hit back! These laws go against everything. No country on earth could keep them. However, individual people can, and Jesus sets an example for us.
If you want to read some of the teachings of Jesus, look at Matthew 5, 6 and 7.
The people that Jesus spoke to were simple people – many could not read or write. So, to help them learn his message, Jesus told stories – parables – based on everyday happenings.
Here are some of the parables that Jesus told:
• The Lost Sheep – Matthew 18:12
• The Cruel Servant – Matthew 18:21
• The Farmer – Luke 8:1
• The Good Samaritan – Luke 10:25
Jesus the Healer
As the Son of God, Jesus had the power of God. Jesus healed many people who were disabled – those who had lost legs, or who were paralysed. He healed people who had various diseases. He healed those who were mentally ill. The Bible talks of people who were “possessed” by evil powers. He made blind people see. See the story of one blind man in Luke 18:35. He made the deaf people hear. He made the mute people speak. He even brought people back to life who had just died. See the story of the young man in Luke 7:11. Also the story of Lazarus in John 11:17.
Jesus was even able to heal people he could not see. In John 4:46 we see the story of a man whose son was dying of a terrible disease about 20 kilometres away. The man had walked a long way to find Jesus. The man wanted Jesus to come and make his son well again. What did Jesus do? He said to the man, “You may go. Your son will live.” What would you do? Would you stay near Jesus and beg with him to come? Well, this man showed that he had faith. He believed that Jesus could make his son better, even though he was far away. Read on from verse 50 and find out what happened.
Jesus was also able to feed over 5000 people with five loaves of bread! At another time, Jesus was at sea in a boat. A fierce storm came up, and he ordered the wind and the waves to stop, and they did!
This was the power of God that was given to Jesus. Jesus did not fix everyone. He usually wanted to see some faith or some trust in those he made well.
Jesus the Example
Do you know what an example is? It is when someone shows us what we are to do, and then we can try it. Jesus is our best example. He was the Son of God. He had great power, but he was obedient to his Father in heaven. When he was hungry, he could have turned the stones into fresh bread rolls. However, that would have used God’s power for himself. Jesus never had any money. His friends supported him, but he was so busy doing God’s work that many times he forgot to eat! He spent entire nights in prayer to God!
What was Jesus trying to achieve? What was God trying to achieve?
Jesus looked closely at people – not nations. He looked at us as individual men and women. He could look at each of us and see what we really are inside. What we have done. What we might be hiding. We all have secrets. If we met Jesus, he would know all our secrets. We could not hide anything from Jesus. But Jesus wants us to change. To be more like him. To be children of our Father in heaven.
Jesus wants us to be kind to everyone. He wants us to love and care for everyone we meet. Even if someone hates us, we are to love that person. And if we really love them, then they cannot hate us.
Jesus the Future King
Jesus also told us about the future. He was born to be king of the world, and told us there would be a time when all the bad things in this world will be destroyed. Only those who have followed Jesus will be saved. Jesus will test everyone to see if they are his followers or not.
Jesus was an amazing person. There has been no one else like him. Please read the first four books in the New Testament to find out more about this man. However, Jesus is not just a famous person who is now dead. Jesus did die, but he now lives again.